90 Percent of Businesses Agree that Switch from Paper to Mobile-based Training is Beneficial, Inkling Survey Discovers

Survey underscores demand for mobile training tools to combat high turnover and improve customer experiences

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. — January 8, 2018 — Inkling Systems, Inc. (“Inkling”), a modern digital learning enablement platform for frontline employees, today announced the results of a survey that highlights the importance of providing digital learning tools for the modern workforce to improve on-the-job performance and stave off turnover in today’s ultra-competitive labor market. While the majority of those surveyed said that mobile devices, mobile apps and software are vital for training their employees, nearly half are still using paper-based training materials, even though they believe these tools are ineffective. Mobile resources provide today’s digitally savvy workforce with easy access to training and reference materials that enable them to learn at their own pace and stay up-to-date on continually changing company offerings.

“Today’s workforce expects immediate access to information that is personalized for their needs and available with the same engaging visual experiences they’ve become accustomed to through the use of smartphones and tablets,” said Jeff Carr, CEO of Inkling. “Increasingly, employers are recognizing the need to invest in digital tools and mobile devices that enable employees to search for information at any time and both learn and collaborate in the flow of their daily work. They know this is essential to set their workers up for success and ultimately increase retention.”

The survey – “Why Mobile is the Right Tool to Optimize Learner and Customer Experiences: A U.S. Study on How Organizations Benefit by Enabling their Customer-facing Employees with Mobile” – was conducted for Inkling in mid-2018 by Vanson Bourne to evaluate how U.S. retail and restaurant organizations are using mobile today, what challenges they face, which benefits they are experiencing or anticipating, and what they hope to accomplish in the next 12 to 18 months.

Key findings in the report include:

  • Mobile-enabled employees improves customer experiences and impressions – Ninety percent of survey respondents said that their customer-facing staff are their best organizational asset for shaping the customer experience, but 69 percent admit their frontline employees currently find it difficult to meet customer expectations. Fortunately, nearly all of those surveyed have already implemented, or are beginning to introduce, mobile devices (99 percent) and mobile apps/software (97 percent) for training. 86 percent reported that their frontline staff is better able to meet customer expectations since they have become mobile-enabled.
  • Customer-facing employees do not receive enough ongoing training and lack direct access to reference materials – On average, restaurants update their menus every seven weeks and launch promotions every five weeks, while retail organizations do floor resets every six weeks. Given the frequency of change in the workplace, it may be surprising to learn that frontline employees receive six hours of onboarding when they join an organization but only three hours per quarter of ongoing training.
  • Communication with frontline staff is a challenge because they don’t sit in front of a computer all day – Both executives and workers agree that communication needs to improve in both directions. However, 86 percent of executives say headquarters could do a better job keeping customer-facing staff informed, and 61 percent of workers find it difficult to share information with management. In addition, workers say tools for communicating with their peers is the capability they would most like organizations to provide.
  • Outdated training processes and tools must be replaced – Only 19 percent of respondents think paper-based training is extremely effective for the modern workforce, yet 44 percent of materials are still paper-based. Ninety percent said it would be beneficial to switch from paper-based training to online/mobile-based training, with almost all (99 percent) indicating that they believe mobile software training is effective. In the survey, 48 percent said that more mobile devices for customer-facing staff would be better, and 41 percent want more mobile apps and software.

Learn more about the impact of mobile training on the modern workforce; download the survey here.

About Inkling 

Inkling is a modern digital learning enablement platform designed for the frontline that brings learning and doing together. Inkling improves the employee experience starting on day one by providing mobile access to the training and resources workers need to be successful in their roles. Leading brands trust Inkling to help them efficiently onboard employees, ensure continued performance enablement and successfully execute corporate initiatives while providing new levels of visibility into critical operating metrics. Founded in 2009, Inkling is based in San Francisco, Calif. For more information, visit www.inklingelemdev.wpengine.com.